Character Stroke Order

All the characters in Chinese are the combination of some strokes. The Strokes in use are located in the table below:

The main strokes of Chinese characters

Horizontal
   Chinese name of this stroke: 横 héng
Vertical
    Chinese name of this stroke: 竖 shù
Vertical with Hook
    Chinese name of this stroke:钩 gōu
Bend to the left
    Chinese name of this stroke: 弯 wān
Throw away
    Chinese name of this stroke: 撇 piě
Press down
    Chinese name of this stroke: 捺 nà
Rise
    Chinese name of this stroke: 提 tí
Point
   Chinese name of this stroke: 点 diǎn

There are certain rules on how to write the characters.

WHY do we need to know the correct stroke order?
First of all, knowing this you can draw the character correctly, quickly and beautifully. Moreover, you can find your character in some programs that require handwriting (for example, you can draw it instantly on your smartphone). If you draw a character with wrong stroke order, the program can’t recognize it.

RULES for correct stroke order:
Characters are being written stroke by stroke consistently, and also the specific stroke order should be minded.

1. A character should be written from top to bottom
2. A characher should be written from left to write
3. At first the horizontal strokes should be written, then vertical ones, Throw away and press down. But if the horizontal bottom line isn’t crossed, it should be written at last
4. At first the elements of outer profile should be written, then the elements of inside go, and the horizontal bottom line goes at last.
5. At first Throw away is written, then Press down is written
6. At first one should draw a vertical stroke in the center (if it exists), and then the other strokes go
7. The right point should be written at last.

Please keep in mind that in Hongkong, Taiwan, Macao, and continental China character stroke order can differ. Here we use the standardized continental China system.

To practice your character drawing skills, you can download the following worksheets:

There are also several opportunities to watch the correct stroke order for a character. Here I give you the links to the websites that can do that:

1. Yellow Bridge This website is very convenient, it has a broad and deep base. After searching for your character, you should find a tab Strokes. Here you can see the stroke order and set the speed of strokes changing.

2. Arch Chinese. A pretty deep character base. The system can pronounce a character, translate it to English and give the correct stroke order.

3. Nicku A beautiful website with extensive use: stroke order, sound, examples, translation.

4. kanji.sljfaq.org/draw.html a very simple and convenient website. It gives you numbers in the order of how the strokes should be written.

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